Day 306: Profile of a Father: Benjamin Franklin

  1. “Temperance. Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation.”
  2. “Silence. Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation.”
  3. “Order. Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.”
  4. “Resolution. Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.”
  5. “Frugality. Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e., waste nothing.”
  6. “Industry. Lose no time; be always employ’d in something useful; cut off all unnecessary actions.”
  7. “Sincerity. Use no hurtful deceit; think innocently and justly, and, if you speak, speak accordingly.”
  8. “Justice. Wrong none by doing injuries, or omitting the benefits that are your duty.”
  9. “Moderation. Avoid extremes; forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.”

10. “Cleanliness. Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, cloaths, or habitation.”

11. “Tranquility. Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or unavoidable.”

12. “Chastity. Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.”

13. “Humility. Imitate Jesus and Socrates.”

Benjamin Franklin was one of the founding fathers of the United States. He started from very poor circumstances and built a life for himself, applying himself to a variety of fields, such as inventing writing and diplomacy.

We owe him for such things as the lightning rod and bifocals, but also for his famous bits of wisdom. Many of his sayings are still in common use today, such as “a penny saved is a penny earned” and “early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy and wealthy and wise.”

He played a pivotal role in the Constitutional convention, and is so beloveds that he was honored by a spot on the $100 bill. He was a father many times over, having 17 children by two wives. He taught his children and others thirteen virtues by which he lives.